Lee Sin Build Guide by SychoSid
Not Updated For Current Season
This guide has not yet been updated for the current season. Please keep this in mind while reading. You can see the most recently updated guides on the browse guides page.
Your votes and comments encourage our guide authors to continue
creating helpful guides for the League of Legends community.
Lee Sin Build
Not Updated For Current Season
The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.
DISCLAIMER: The general information in these guides is about the same as what I wrote in my guides on SoloMid.net. However, I encourage you to read these ones as well because I have rewritten those guides completely. You will also find that I have thrown in new information.
Lee Sin is a pest. Everything about this champion revolves around terrorizing the enemy team. He is a tanky assassin-bruiser with unmatched mobility and a good amount of crowd control. On the plus side, his skillcap is moderately high, and because of this, a gradient of Lee Sin players is created. If you are in the "noob section" of the gradient, do not fret! These guides should help you improve drastically as long as you treat it like your bible.
What to Expect
After reading these guides, you will have a thorough understanding of Lee Sin, his role on the team, and what he is capable of. I hope that you will also learn about how to play as the top laner or jungler as well as what you should be doing in teamfights.
My goal while writing these guides was to make them jam-packed with information that is actually easy to read and understand. Most importantly, I hope that these guides will make all of you better players. If I don't seem to accomplish any of these tasks, or if you just have general questions, please feel free to add questions and comments below.
The masteries I have chosen are pretty much the standard for any ad-based jungler now: 21/9/0. Sure you can run 21 into defense, but it's not as efficient. In the offense tree, everything fits so well with Lee. There is no wasted stat. All that we need from the defense tree are the resistances and bladed armor masteries to slightly speed up our jungle and make it healthier.
By the way, since they recently took out the 4% critical chance mastery and replaced it with an AD per lvl mastery (9 at lvl 18 if maxed), I decided to just invest points into this. Though 9 points doesn't seem like a lot, I feel that it a lot more beneficial than other choices.
When combined with your masteries, you have a total of 16 flat armor penetration and with an additional 10% and 13 attack damage. Before the mastery tree was reworked, I ran a total of 18 armor penetration, but my new set of runes is slightly more efficient. With this minor change, your ganks will be more effective. For example, if their mid lane has 18 armor, then 18 - 16 = 2 - 1.8 = 0.2. You'll basically be dealing true damage to them. The flat 13 armor and magic resist are good overall throughout the game. The armor is pretty self-explanatory for any jungler (less damage taken), and for magic resist, it is your choice whether you want to get flat or per level glyphs. I choose flat magic resist since you'll be ganking really frequently and obviously do not want to take that much magic damage from their AP casters.
Alternative Runes Choices:
I know some Lee Sin players like running a full 15 AD from marks and quintessences. It works imo and you do deal massive damage, but the armor penetration allows you to deal more to champions. I'm not sure about the math exactly though.
In the past, I've tried out flat energy glyphs and they worked out well, but with this current meta, there are a lot of team comps running double AP (top and mid lane), so that extra MR is probably going to be better for these games.
I get Smite for obvious reasons. NEVER jungle without Smite.
Flash is just amazing on Lee Sin.
Using flash offensively:
1. Flash into range, and shoot
2. Flash onto target if surrounded by obstacles (ie, minions) to
3. To gank/pick a target off: Flash behind target and their *** to your team
Using flash defensively (for escapes):
1. Flash over ledges
2. Dodge skillshots (ie, Ashe arrows, etc)
3. Flash into range of your minions, teammates, wards so you can to them
These are only a few examples to what you can do with Flash.
*The information that I post in each skill description can be found at leagueoflegends.wikia.com.
Lee Sin is the only champion that possesses seven skills (except for Nidalee, since she has to be in cougar form to use her other skills). This makes him extremely unique because these skills give him more damage, more survivability, and more tankiness. Just judging from his skillset, you can see that he is made for the jungle.
Upon activating a skill, Lee Sin's next two auto attacks will have increased attack speed, refunding 10 energy per hit.
This passive is what allows Lee Sin to clear the jungle as quickly as he does and is also what makes him such a threat 1v1. However, these effects do not stack if you spam skills immediately after the other. This is why it is important to space out Skill -> 2 autos -> Next Skill... etc. (However, in actual battle, you will not always be able to fully utilize this passive.)
Q: Sonic Wave / Resonating Strike
Sonic Wave: Lee Sin shoots wave, dealing 50/80/110/140/170 (+0.9 per bonus attack damage) physical damage to the first enemy it hits. If Sonic Wave does hit, Lee Sin can activate the second part of the skill, Resonating Strike, within the next 3 seconds.
Cost: 50 Energy
Resonating Strike: Lee Sin goes crazy and leaps at the enemy, dealing 50/80/110/140/170 (+0.9 per bonus attack damage) + 8% of the target's missing life (Max: 400 damage vs. Monsters).
Cost: 30 Energy
Cooldown: 11 / 10 / 9 / 8 / 7 seconds
Lee Sin's Resonating Strike gives him a lot of mobility as well as killing potential. You can shoot a Sonic Wave from across a wall to jump to the next jungle camp, or to initiate a gank/chase. It can also be used defensively to help you escape by Q'ing to the enemy in the far back and running the other direction when being chased.
Also notice that both parts of the skill has its own base damage in addition to 0.9 BONUS AD, giving you a grand total of 180% bonus AD scaling. That is huge, especially when combined with the +8% of your target's missing health being converted to damage as well. The Max 400 potential dmg dealt to monster's is also what makes Lee Sin's jungle control virtually unmatched. This allows you to take huge chunks of hp off of dragon and Baron Nashor.
TIP #1: You can use the combo + + to deal massive damage to any jungle creep (this includes BARON).
W: Safeguard / Iron Will
Safeguard: Lee Sin jumps to an allied champion, minion, or ward, creating a shield on the object as well as himself for 40/80/120/160/200 (+0.8 per ability power) damage. Lee Sin can cast Iron Will within the next 3 seconds.
Cost: 50 Energy
Iron Will: For the next 5 seconds, Lee Sin gains 5/10/15/20/25% bonus lifesteal and spell vamp, along with 10/15/20/25/30 bonus armor.
Cost: 30 Energy
Cooldown: 8 seconds
This skill is the reason why Lee Sin is so damn hard to kill. He can just dive into your turret range, kill you, and safeguard back out. If he has a ward on him, he can place it over ledges, into bushes, anywhere, and safeguard to it to help him escape (juke). Safeguard is also great for saving teammates! There have been so many instances where I've saved a teammate by taking a Caitlyn ult for them, or shielding them from a turret shot, Vlad ult, you name it. Use your imagination because the list goes on.
Iron will allows Lee Sin to stay in fights longer than other champions can. If you don't feel like recalling back to heal or shop, you can simply go to the nearest creeps (when safe to do so), and turn on Iron Will to leech your life back. In conjunction with wriggle's lantern, bloodthirster, or hextech gunblade, you can easily leech most/all of your life back with only a few autoattacks. The spellvamp also for smite and the damage you deal from your skills as well.
TIP #2: You can use Iron Will with the combo I mentioned in TIP #1 to leach back a good amount of hp.
E: Tempest / Cripple
Tempest: Lee Sin smashes the ground dealing 60/95/130/165/200 (+1.0 per bonus attack damage) magic damage to all nearby enemies and revealing them for 4 seconds. If Tempest hits an enemy, Lee Sin can cast Cripple within the next 3 seconds.
Cost: 50 Energy
Cripple: Lee Sin cripples all enemies revealed by Tempest reducing their movement and attack speed by 30/37.5/45/52.5/60%. The movement and attack speed recover gradually over 4 seconds.
Cost: 30 Energy
This ability allows you to farm, take minimal dmg from the jungle, prevent an enemy from running away, save an ally who is being focused, or secure kills. Oh yeah, it also makes you a nightmare for champions that rely on attack speed or go invisible (ie, Shaco Twitch Evelynn Tryndamere Vayne etc. You get the idea.
R: Dragon's Rage
Lee Sin kicks the enemy with so much force that they soil themselves and fly back, knocking up all other enemy units that it collides with. All joking aside (IT WASN'T A JOKE), this skill deals 200/400/600 (+2.0 per bonus attack damage) physical damage to the initial target as well as those that it collides with.
Cooldown: 90/75/60 seconds
There really isn't much to be said about this skill except that it kicks *** (literally). You will stick your foot so far up their *** that they'd be mistaken to be your shoe. Lee Sin's ultimate is an AOE nuke that can turn instantly turn the battle around in your favor. If not, then it's a pretty good skill to escape with.
TIP #3: + + is a combo very similar to the one shown in TIP #1. In this case, we have replaced Smite with Dragon's Rage. Since the combo in Tip #1 was used to finish off dragons, barons, and creeps, it'd only make sense that this combo is used to finish off enemy champions! Give it a try, and if you're fast enough, you can throw in and a few autoattacks before the + to make that deal even MORE damage!
**I know that some of you more experienced Lee Sin players may already be aware of the combos and some of you may even have come up with your own, but these are for the newer Lee Sin players who don't know them, so be patient.
Jungling & Skill Sequence
3) Red Buff (smite Red)
4) Double Golems
7) Blue Buff
9) Double Golems, ETC.
*Feel free to gank any time between the steps if you see any opportunity to do so. You want to utilize that red buff as much as possible. If a lane is overextended, do not hesitate to gank it even if you don't get a kill. Just be sure to apply pressure to show that jungle presence.
Gank Bot Early
Start: , , OR
Route #1 - Blue Team (Route can also be used to gank top lane when on purple team)
1) Double Golems (have teammates leash)
3) Red Buff
4) Double Golems (you should now be level 3)
*If counterjungling, you want to get out of there fast, in which case I would do:
Wraiths --> Red Buff --> Double Golems --> GANKGANKGANK
Route #2 - Purple Team
1) (A) Wolves (B) Smite enemy Big Wraith
2) Go back and take your Blue Buff
3) Gank bottom lane through river, or through bottom bush
ITEM START ANALYSIS
"So which item(s) should I start with then? What do you recommend?"
Since the mastery and jungle changes, my favorite route would have to be the Stable/Sustained Route. With the along with your masteries, you are literally full HP all jungle long. However, I have started boots before and do enjoy that as well. It really doesn't matter imo. It only changes slightly due to the situation you're in.
So for the "Gank bot" route, you may be wondering, "Which items should I start with?" So let's analyze our options:
- Most cost-efficient
- Lee Sin can literally jungle forever with it
Depending on how much gold you've saved up, you will either get , , or ideally,
You do NOT want to just get a Wriggle's without boots. Mobility is KEY to any jungler, especially Lee Sin who can apply crazy amounts of pressure throughout the entire game.
As with the Vampiric Scepter, you want to get as soon as possible (ALWAYS). Build your as soon as possible into .
- High mobility
- Really strong counterjungling item
- Allows you to pressure lanes more effectively
Similarly to starting with Cloth Armor, you want to rush starting with
NOTE #1: No matter what item you start out with, do not forget to buy sight ward! As soon as you've gotten your Wriggle's Lantern, or Madred's Razors even, you want to have you or your support buy and clear dragon. If the front of dragon is clear, then you can Q in from behind to avoid any river/tribush wards (if on Blue Team), or have one of your teammates come help you with it. With Wriggle's, you can easily solo dragon though (pray that you get enough procs to make it quicker/healthier).
Counterjungling / Matchups
As the jungler, counterjungling is optional. However, it is one of the factors that separates a good jungler from a mediocre one.
When counterjungling, you want keep these things in mind:
1. Who is the enemy jungler?
2. Where does this jungler start?
3. Knowing (2), am I going to start off at their jungle or mine?
4. Should I take their jungle camps and wait for the enemy jungler?
5. If I encounter the enemy jungler, how far do I commit?
All of the questions that were asked above take can be answered simply with a matchups section.
The following champions are relatively easy jungles to counter. By this, I mean that they are pushovers, so try to hurt their jungle EARLY (but be mindful of ganks).
Amumu is a really easy to counterjungle since he is heavily reliant on blue buff. This means that if he starts at blue, you can probably just start at his jungle or take his red. After doing so, you're crazy strong, so you could just wait in a bush for him to walk by and attack him. You should be able to make him blow his Flash 99% of the time. When he does, be sure not to go too far into their jungle or else you'll probably find yourself in a horrible situation and feed the buff(s) to an enemy solo.
Though I have no encountered many Alistars in the jungle, I would imagine that they are extremely blue dependent, and similar to Amumu, he should be really easy to bully around. Be careful for his cc though! He can bait you really hard.
Fiddlesticks is by far, the jungler who has the hardest time recovering. Unlike both Alistar and Amumu, he has no aoe dmg outside of his Dark Wind, and it costs a lot of mana. This being said, if you even take his blue buff while he's on it, he'll be behind for the entire game (assuming your team does not feed him somehow by allowing easy ganks). You can steal his red and beat him with it as well.
Warwick's ganks are really strong only when he is level 6. Pre-6, he's barely even a threat. None of his abilities even pose a threat to you. You can literally have your way with him. However, keep in mind that he does not have to start at blue buff, so use that Clairvoyance if you have one to get an idea of where he's starting.
Note: By "dangerous" matchups, I do mean that you should not attempt to counterjungle these champions. I simply just mean that there is a much higher risk when countering these junglers as opposed to those in the "EASY Matchups" section. Invade with caution at your own risk.
Gangplank is really dangerous at early levels. His damage output is quite high, but you slightly outdamage him. However, his passive slow is going to be a huge problem if you commit on him in the jungle. This will allow his teammates to collapse onto you, forcing you to blow flash or give up first blood. This being said, I would NOT force fights with Gangplank early, but I will still steal his jungle if safe to do so.
The thing about Udyr that makes him excel in the jungle is that his clear time is ridiculously fast due to his huge aoe burst damage with every third hit of Phoenix Stance. His Turtle Stance can match your Safeguard in terms of durability and sustainability. He is also really hard to run from due to his Bear Stance. However, if you do find an opportunity to counterjungle him, by all means do it. Despite his strengths, Udyr players generally start at blue buff since he'll be constantly spamming his skills in the jungle. Since we know this, we can at least take his wraiths, leaving one, and continue back to our own jungle before he realizes what we've done. You could take his red as well, but it'll be cutting it a bit close. Be sure that you have someone guard you or leash for you.
Shyvana is a really scary jungler, but she is mainly a CONTROL jungler. Her clear time is just as fast as Udyr's, but her mobility is far greater since she maxes Burnout first, which scales with damage and MOVESPEED. As a control jungler, she can invade/counterjungle at an alarming rate and her damage output is just stupid. However, if you do manage to catch her in her jungle or your own, she isn't terrible to fight. Unlike Gangplank or Udyr, she has no crowd control. If she turns on her Burnout and goes after you, you should Tempest her immediately, back out and wait for her skill to wear out, then fight. If she doesn't land a hit on you while her Burnout is active, then at most, the skill only lasts 3 seconds.
Skarner is also quite blue dependent. Counterjungle him like you would Udyr. However, he's a lot scarier than Udyr if you get in a fight with him. His Crystal Slash permaslow is like Gangplank on steroids; the mana cost is really low and does huge amounts of damage. Tempest him immediately and run if he's going for you! He does fall a bit low vs red buff though, so if you want to hurt him early, catch him there. Remember, him blowing a Flash is good enough. Do not pursue him if it puts you at risk.
Clairvoyance is absolutely VITAL to counterjungling, or for high level competitive gameplay for that matter. As far as the jungle is concerned, you want to tell your support player when/where to CV so you can get an idea of where the enemy jungler is starting, or how fast he's going. Without Clairvoyance against champions like Udyr or Shyvana, you might get caught in the act and be in huge danger.
- Know who your enemy is, and from this, decide your game plan
- Pay attention to the minimap at all times to make sure their team isn't collapsing onto you. The last thing you want is to give up fb or buffs to the jungler or possibly enemy solo. It will ruin the lane and the flow of the game!
- Have that Clairvoyance ready, and tell your support where to use it! IT IS OP.
NOTE #2: Counterjungling is not limited to just early game. You should counterjungle throughout the entire game whenever safe to do so. Just make sure that you or your teammates ward his jungle up. If you see the enemy jungler nowhere near you and/or have their jungle warded, feel free to just roam into his jungle and take whatever camps are up. If you are in the area and know you can beat him, don't be afraid to be the bully and invade to maybe pick up a kill.
Not sure if taking dragon is considered counterjungling, but if you see him ganking a lane, say top, and there are at least two enemies there, that should be a free dragon for you. Call your team over ASAP and take it! Same applies to killing Baron if your team is strong enough and near the area. Lee Sin can Baron quickly with his attack speed, and wriggles in addition to his Safeguard. Your Resonating Strike is especially strong as Baron gets lower, so take advantage of that for a quick baron.
NOTE #3: Rather than bombard you guys with information about each item and why it'll be useful, I'm just going to explain what the build provides.
NOTE #4: I had different starts on each of my builds just for show. Like I said, it is your choice about what path you want to take.
BUILD #1 - ALL-AROUND BUILD
This build is kind of the "standard build" imo. The Wriggle's Lantern and Aegis of the Legion build for a jungler is just so strong. Even though Aegis of the Legion is expected for the support to get in this meta, I feel that it is just ridiculous on the jungler. My reasoning is that since you're ganking so often, you'll be giving your teammates those auras every time you gank, making them more resistant to damage. Plus, if you get it early, that'll allow your support player to buy Shurelya's Reverie.
Next, I get Phage followed immediately by an Atma's Impaler (you can buy your boots some in between these buys. You will have enough hp to make this buy totally worth it. Not to mention, it'll make you tankier with the armor boost and increase your damage output by a significant amount. I finish off the frozen malllet later because the slow is simply broken. Nobody should be able to get away from you without blowing ultimates or summoner spells. The extra life that it provides also improves the bonus AD that you receive from Atma's Impaler.
BUILD #2 - METAGOLEM BUILD
From what I've noticed, this is the more popular build that I see Lee Sin players going. This works really well when you have an amazing start and lead on the opponent. Why not just buy Warmog's Armor and get beefy enough to the point where they can't even hurt you? And of course, you follow up immediately with Atma's Impaler so you can actually deal damage. The Negatron Cloak is there just to help you mitigate some damage, but if you don't need it or feel that their AP is not a threat, go ahead and move onto Phage into Trinity Force. The synergy in this build is just amazing if you're able to pull it off.
BUILD #3 - FED BUILD
This build is called the "Fed Build" because I would only go this route if I get fed like crazy. Often times, this happens when I start with a Vampiric Scepter and go straight into The Bloodthirster. The early lifesteal and damage output is just going to overwhelm your opponents. However, be sure to be not get cocky. A few deaths will allow your opponent to catch up to you, and you'll just explode in teamfights.
(You can also just finish Wriggle's Lantern and build an Infinity Edge if you'd like.)
The point of this build is to keep the ball rolling. You will first build a main damage item since Lee Sin scales so high with AD. By now, the enemy team should be really far behind, so why not protect your killing spree and really give them a hard time and buy HP? Here, your options for hp are either Frozen Mallet or Warmog's Armor. If you don't know which to get, start off with Giant's Belt. If you want the Frozen Mallet, then buy a Phage before. The damage will further increase your lead, and the 180 hp difference shouldn't matter that much because they shouldn't even be able to kill you. Of course, follow up with Atma's Impaler to convert that health pool into damage.
If the game really does get this far, you'll probably be a high priority target, especially if you're the only one fed on your team. Finish up your build with Guardian Angel. It is truly worth it and might even save a bad teamfight.
In this guide, I have included 3 builds - the all-around support/tanky/dps build, the metagolem build, and the fed-out-your-*** build. An important thing to notice is that I did not include tier2+ boots in ANY of the builds above. Boots are just so situational, and Lee Sin's fancy feet have many viable options and needs depending on the game.
These are the most expensive boots, but with reason. More often than not, you will be getting these boots because they're optimal for when teams have at least 2 forms of stuns/slows. They reduce the duration of silences as well, but stuns/slows are going to kill you more often than silences will.
AMAZING boots. Ideally, I would get these boots over Mercury's Treads, but you will almost never encounter a team with no cc's. However, if you are really ahead in the game, these boots will do wonders. You will be able to clear your jungle quickly just because you'd have super strong items, and you can gank so often. The enemy team will not expect your speed.
Get this for teams with strong autoattackers, say Tryndamere, Caitlyn, and only if you feel their AD is killing you more than their cc's are.
I only get this if I'm ridiculously fed and the game became a joke.
After reading through the builds and the explanations that I've provided, it is important to list "Situational Items". By this term, I simply mean that these items are not in the core item builds, but they are very important under certain circumstances.
MAGIC RESIST CHOICES
Choosing the right item to build from your Negatron Cloak is really important.
Quicksilver Sash is really cost-efficient. It's as if you have Cleanse, only with 48 magic resist to go along with it. However, you do not gain any extra MR from the upgrade, so I would just hold onto the Negatron Cloak until you've purchased some of your core items or unless you REALLY have to. The cooldown is quite low and is best against teams with immobilizers like Skarner, Amumu, Malzahar, or Warwick, etc.
Banshee's Veil is extremely strong against casters who rely on an initial spell to chain off of for their burst damage. (ie, LeBlanc, Sion, Brand, Xerath) The only reason I would get this item is if their team has 2-3 of these types of champions. I do not remember ever buying it though, as I really do prefer Quicksilver Sash a lot more.
Force of Nature is a really great item, but I would buy it as more of a last item. It's not too expensive, weighing in at 2610g, but similarly with Atma's Impaler, you'll get more out of it late game when you have a huge health pool. The movespeed is really great as well since it just adds onto your mobility.
Hexdrinker is really great, but it's more of a laning item. If you do decide to get it, hopefully it's because they have threats like Garen or if their AP carry is getting really fed. Overall, not a terrible buy, and comes at a fair price.
Randuin's Omen is probably the best armor item for Lee Sin. If you're behind in the game and you know that you'll need a little armor, start off by buying an early Heart of Gold. If it gets to mid game and you haven't gotten one yet, then you should probably just get the Warden's Mail. This item is extremely gold-efficient for what it offers you, and it's great against ranged AD or melee AD players who decide to chase or autoattack you. I would get this over Thornmail almost 100% of the time because their AD carry can just choose NOT to hit you if you buy Thornmail. If you get Randuin's Omen, you will be able to chase/escape the enemy more effectively and you can zone/peel for your teammates as well because of the active.
ENEMY TEAM STACKING ARMOR?
Good AD scaling. 40% armor penetration OP. NUFF SAID.
For teamfights, you want to Safeguard your squishy teammates when they're being targeted, or even tanks when they're getting low. Whether you're built more as a glass cannon, or took the tanky route, you need to peel enemies off of teammates when they are being pursued. This is where your Tempest comes in.
Any time you see an enemy who is out of position, Resonating Strike to them if possible and safe to do so. Then Tempest them to allow your team to catch up and take them out, making it a 5v4.
Save your Dragon's Rage for times when the enemy is clustered together. If your team is retreating with the enemy team chasing close behind, Dragon's Rage the closest one to hit as many enemies as possible. With the damage that you'll be dishing it, it is likely that that kick could turn the teamfight into your favor.
Don't forget to utilize your passive! In longer teamfights, you want to space out your skills still, otherwise you'll run out of energy in no time and not be as effective for the rest of the fight.
: to catch enemies out of position, to chase, to finish, to just deal heavy damage on a single target
: to protect, to escape, to bait
: to peel, to slow dps champions and reduce their dmg output, to secure kills
: to cc multiple targets (especially the carry), to flee, to secure kill, to isolate a target (though I do not recommend using it on just ONE enemy if you can help it), to look cool
This concludes my guide to playing Jungle Lee Sin. I would like to take the time to thank and appreciate those of you who actually read through it all. It was obviously a lot of information with a lot of time invested into it. As I mentioned waaaaay up top in the beginning of my guide, be sure to include your feedback, questions, comments all below.
On a side note, I currently do have a livestream that can be found at:
The sad part is that I do not stream as often as I should due to being caught up with a bunch of schoolwork, but feel free to favorite/subscribe to the stream if you're interested in watching me when I DO stream.
+1 this guide or even favorite it if you liked it! If you hated it, don't hesitate to say why. After all, I'm just writing this guide for you guys. I'll be uploading new videos for this guide in the "Jungle Routes" section as soon as my LoLRecorder stops being lame. I will also be coming out with new guides every few weeks, so be sure to be on the lookout for those!